John F. ‘Jack’ Walsh Sr., 85

FULTON, NY – John F. “Jack” Walsh Sr., 85 of Fulton died Thursday June 14, 2012, at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse following a brief illness.

Born on April 29, 1927, in New Brunswick, NJ, to Edward and Marguerite (McGovern) Walsh, he had resided in Fulton since 1931.

John F. ‘Jack’ Walsh Sr.
John F. ‘Jack’ Walsh Sr.

Jack was a 1943 graduate of Fulton High School and had attended the Crane School of Music at Potsdam State College.

He was a veteran of the U. S. Navy from 1945-1946 serving in the Pacific Theatre, Hawaii, Philippines, Korea and China aboard the U.S.S. LSM 475.

He was vice president of Walsh’s Manor Inc. Restaurant in Fulton from 1947-1957.

Jack served the city of Fulton as assistant city clerk for three years before becoming the City Clerk from 1958 until his retirement in 1985.

He was a past president of NYS Association of City and Village Clerks; member of the Planning Commission of NYS Conference of Mayors and International Institute of Municipal Clerks.

He was a 37-year member, past president and Paul Harris Fellow of the Fulton Rotary Club and was a member of the Hamer Sing-a-long Group serving local area nursing homes.

Jack received the 1996 and 2005 Volunteer of the Year Award at Michaud Nursing Home and with his wife, Emma, was a joint recipient of the Fulton Community Service Award.

He served three terms as a legislator on the Oswego County Legislature from 1988-1993 and he received the Fulton Republican Committee 2001 Distinguished Citizenship Award.

Jack was a communicant of The Church of the Immaculate Conception since 1931 where he had been a trustee and choir member and he had served on the Oswego County Catholic Charities Board of Directors.

He participated in many musical fields and was a well-known vocalist.

Jack organized and sang in his own barbershop quartet “The No Name Quartet” as well as SPEBSQSA and sang as a choral and choir member and in various stage productions.

He was a past vice president of the Fulton Men’s Chorus; sang with the SUNY at Oswego Festival Chorus and had been a vocalist with the Syracuse Symphony.

Jack was a former charter member of the Fulton Lions Club and a social member of the Fulton Polish Home.

An avid golfer, he was an organizer and active participant in the Fulton City Golf League for more than two decades.

In his retirement, he enjoyed golf, gardening and grandchildren.

He was well-known and respected and the Irish spirit and soul of the Walsh clan.

He was a devoted husband, father, grandpa, great grandpa, uncle and family provider throughout his married life.

Surviving are his wife of 62 years, Emma (Rowley) Walsh of Fulton; two sons, John Walsh Jr. and Harold (Sandra) Walsh of Fulton; three grandchildren, Tiffany, Siobhan and Brandon Walsh; three great-grandchildren, Damien Piper, Mitchell Shurtleff and Grace Ellen Kitts; a sister, Rosemary Gillard of Vestal; and many nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his brother, Thomas Walsh; and sisters, Aileen Gillard and Jeanne Doull.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 9:30 a.m. Saturday, June 23 at Holy Trinity Church (formerly The Church of the Immaculate Conception) corner of Rochester and South Third streets, Fulton, with burial at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Fulton.

Calling hours will be held 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 22 at Foster Funeral Home, 910 Fay St., Fulton.

The family requests memorial contributions made to: Alzheimer’s Association, 441 W. Kirkpatrick St., Syracuse, NY 13204 or St. Joseph’s Hospital M.I.C.U., 301 Prospect Ave., Syracuse, NY 13203 or Holy Trinity Church, 309 Buffalo St., Fulton, NY 13069.


  1. Jack was, without question, the happiest man to be around I have ever known. He always saw the good in things. He was my singing, golfing, poker playing fellow legislator and best of all — friend. Since we moved to florida in 92, our visits have been few but he will always be in my thoughts. God has a lead tenor for the choir, and the best ever. Don Jojnson

  2. We are very sad to read about Jack. What a great man he was. I don’t think I ever saw him without a big smile. Ms Emma, John, Harold and family – I pray that the love and support from family and friends will help you all through this difficult time. With love, Debbie (Wallace) & Rich Hall Morristown, TN

  3. What a loss to us all…His encouragement during tough times was a godsend to me personally, and I have heard of many occasions when his words and that amazing smile of his lifted others up as well. And his voice, always reaching for the higher, longer, and stronger note…such an inspiration to all who met him.

  4. Jack was a big part of our community. His activities touched so many of us but the one thing that we will miss the most is his wonderful voice and his rendition of “Danny Boy,” which always left us teary eyed. Our memory of him will last forever.

  5. T&P’s to the Walsh family. All of us who attended St. Mary’s grew up with Mr. Walsh singing in the choir. The children mass and every holly day he was always there, i can still hear he’s wonderful voice. Harold, mom (Eleanor Roth) and I send u and your family our condolences and prayers, God Bless.

  6. Jack was an extremely special person and cousin. We will also remember his warm smile and ability to make everyone feel comfortable and at peace with a wonderful story or a little humor. Jack touched the hearts of many people with his kindness and truly beautiful singing voice. Thank you God for the happy times we shared with Jack and take good care of him!

  7. My mother, before she died, shared a room with Emma at St.Luke’s. Most nights, before we left, Emma, Jack, and John gifted us with a couple of songs. They brought a bit of pleasure into an extremely painful situation.
    But that was only one of the many memories that resulted from Jack’s love of people and of singing. He is truly one of Fulton’s treasures.

  8. One of the first memories I have of Jack is at 176, where he would sing and play with Dave Gillard and I when we were very little. Then Dave would make me so mad, reminding me that “Uncle Jack”, was his uncle…. not mine. Of course, Jack grandfathered me in to the family.
    I am very sorry to hear about his passing. He will truly be missed.

  9. We were so sad to learn about Jack’s death. He was a lovely man who adored his wife and family. John, I saw you recently with Jack outside of Pontiac Nursing Home as I was driving home from work. You were always the essence of kindness to your parents and I admire you so much for your gentle way. Our thoughts and prayers are for you all now as you grieve the loss of Jack.

  10. Our heartfelt condolences to all the Walsh’s. For the Keough Clan it was not a true family occasion unless it was graced by Uncle Jack’s singing. My wife Jenny and I were fortunate enough to have him sing at our wedding. But his speciality was serenading our departed loved ones into heaven with the Ave Maria and the Our Father. In the words of an Irish blessing:

    And a blessing in each trial.
    For every problem life sends,
    A faithful friend to share,
    For every sigh, a sweet song,

    God bless you Uncle Jack

  11. Our heartfelt condolences to Aunt Emma, Cousins Harold, John and family. It was not a true family occasion for the Keough clan unless Uncle Jack sang.
    Jenny and I were fortunate enough to have him sing at our wedding. We were especially grateful for him serenading our departed loved ones off to heaven with his renditions of the Ave Maria and the Our Father.
    He was a wonderful man for whom this Irish blessing could have been written:

    And a blessing in each trial.
    For every problem life sends,
    A faithful friend to share,
    For every sigh, a sweet song.

    God Bless you Uncle Jack,


  12. John & Harold,

    My heart is crying upon hearing of the passing of your dad. Working at the City Clerk’s Office with Jack for 13 years was such a pleasant experience. Not only was he my “boss”, but also a friend and mentor. Countless memories are flooding my mind.

    His extraordinary love for his family was so apparent. You were blessed to have him for a dad. May he live forever in your hearts.

    Gone – but not forgotten – Jack Walsh, a scholar and a gentleman.

    Condolences to the entire Walsh family.


    Donna Dlugozima
    Ft. Myers Beach, Fl.

  13. What a great and wonderful man Jack was to all while he graced this Earth. I had the great pleasure of playing a round of golf with Jack and John and it’s a memory surpassed only by the even greater pleasure of hearing him sing. Both in church in Fulton, and once in a Irish Pub in Raleigh where everyone stopped what they were doing to listen to his great voice. I did not get many opportunities to visit with him, but there’s no doubt he was a great husband, father, and friend. God’ s lucky to have him in His heavenly choir now!!!

    My heart-felt condolences to the entire Walsh family,
    Ben Poston
    Raleigh NC

  14. It is with deep sadness that I learned of the passing of Jack Walsh.

    I will always remember his musical and fun-loving nature those many Monday evenings after rehearsals with the Fulton Men’s Chorus.

    Jack could make a party when everyone was exhausted from hours of practice. And, even more amazing, he was able to induce hours more beautiful music from the tired male choral group.

    Fulton will never be the same! Those of us that knew him will miss him.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you Emma, John and Harold.

    Arlene Sikes Okoniewski
    Casselberry, FL

  15. My prayers and thoughts to the Walsh family. When my grandfather, Parker Van Buren passed, Jack was there. Also my grandmother Ruth and especially my Dad, Dick Van Buren. I know Jack and my dad harmonized together before I was born and long after. I’m sure they are singing barbershop songs again. Again, my condolences.

  16. I am so sadden by your loss. I played and sang at Meadow Brook and Jack always sang with me. I am not sure if putting a link is appropriate, but this link is a sound clip of Jack and I singing “Oh Danny Boy” one of the days I played. He would sing all the songs with me, but this one touched my heart the most.

    Sending everyone comfort and peace. Deanna Hubbard

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